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The Faces of J: A Year in Retrospect

Admit Weekend struck a chord with a lot of us – it reminded us of the fact that barely a year ago, we stood in their shoes, all starry-eyed, uptight and cautious, excited to be a new admit to the finest business institution in the world. Now a year later, the starry eyes, although a little more bloodshot, have continued to glitter from excitement, the nervousness has changed to a relaxed wisdom, and most importantly, the uncertainty has shifted to a knowledge of how much we have each transformed as leaders, thinkers and friends.

I’ve been particularly blessed, and it’s not just because of the Sky Deck seat I finally got this semester. Section J, my section, is the reason why I’ve been blessed.

We are 90 individuals with 90 personalities whose similarities and differences have created a chemistry that is unrivaled by any other section. As was finally proven at this week’s Section Olympics, we are the most incredible, talented, athletic, street-smart, creative, and spirited section. This week also saw us winning the chili cook-off, maintaining our title as The Undefeated in Boat Races, and we will be sending a LVI representative to speak to the incoming Class of 2005. But that’s only our reputation to the external community.

Inside the walls of Aldrich 208 and the rooms of various SFP apartments, Vermont ski houses, Boston clubs and restaurants, the J identity was created. The J identity is special. It comes from the experiences we have undergone, the jokes and laughs we’ve shared, and the tears, recruiting anxieties, and growing pains that have deepened our relationships. In our first year together, we have welcomed two new babies to the family and are waiting on another. We have had three weddings and anticipate a few more. (Indeed, the love for J is so great that a number of us have brought it to romantic realization.) Our professors and partners have also become an important part of the J-community: they share our knowledge of why “EBITDAR” is so hilarious, why real estate brings a few chuckles, and why a few individuals’ air-time elocutions are considered such precious, ovation-worthy gems. They have seen us looking our best and our worst; the former probably being September before sleep deprivation was a norm and the latter would include first-year cough, post-party hangovers, first semester exams and hell week. But through it all, our family-our professors, partners and sectionmates-has sensed the development of the nirvana that transcends our physical beings; the nirvana that comes with being a part of J.

As a group of 90 individuals, we certainly have had our share of bumps and burns. I wouldn’t lie in saying our nirvana-like success came easy, but each one of those scrapes and bruises have helped us grow together and build memories that we will carry forever. Now, we are even more of a family. And as we stand here on the brink of our last week of classes together in Aldrich 208, I think I speak for all of us in saying we face this next chapter of life with a bit of trepidation and tad of anxiety, but more so, we face it with a calm inner peace because we know that we were one of the lucky few who were able to be a part of Section J.

And that’s an inner peace that we will always have and always share for the rest of our lives. Rock on, Section J!

May 5, 2003
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